Presidential Dogs: Past 10 U.S. Presidents and Their Fur Babies

by Monday, November 14, 2016

While President-elect Donald Trump has no known pets as of the moment, the past U.S. Presidents happily stayed in the White House with their presidential dogs. Being a president of a country is one tough job and these dogs, in one way or another, made the lives of our past commanders-in-chief a little lighter.

It’s a known fact dogs help humans reduce stress. No wonder Presidents of America love their fur babies dearly, they must have been a lot happier playing with the presidential dogs amidst the stressful ruling of our country. I guess President-elect Trump will have to get one for himself one of these days.

Presidential Dogs: Past 10 U.S. Presidents and Their Fur Babies

From our very first president, George Washington, dogs kept company most U.S. Presidents as they ruled and stayed in the White House. Before the new president-elect Donald Trump assumes a position in the White House, what breed do you think he will get as his presidential dog? Let’s get to know the presidential dogs of the past 10 U.S. Presidents below:


1. President John F. Kennedy

JFK may have an allergy to animal hair but that didn’t stop him from having presidential dogs! Along with other pet animals such as Zsa Zsa the rabbit and Sardar the horse, JFK had quite a number of dogs: Charlie the Welsh Terrier, Gaullie the Poodle, Shannon the Cocker Spaniel, Wolf the Irish Wolfhound, Clipper the German Shepherd and Pushinka the mixed-breed dog which was given by Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev as a gift.

Pushinka and Charlie had a litter of puppies which JFK referred to as the “pupniks.” They were named Streaker, Butterfly, Blackie, and White Tips. Before the pupniks were adopted by other families, the Kennedies had spent some quality time with them by bringing the pups to their home on Cape Cod. JFK even spent time playing with the pupniks on their lawn.


2. President Lyndon B. Johnson

President Lyndon B. Johnson | Presidential Dogs: Past U.S. Presidents and Their Fur Babies

Image via Ghosts of DC

Aside from the hamsters and lovebirds, LBJ was very fond of dogs. During his stay in the White House, six lucky presidential dogs accompanied him. The most famous of these presidential dogs are Him and Her, both beagles. Though, it’s sad because both Him and Her died young.

In addition to Him and Her, LBJ also had Edgar and Freckles — both beagles, Blanco the Collie, and Yuki the mixed-breed dog.


3. President Richard Nixon

President Richard Nixon | Presidential Dogs: Past U.S. Presidents and Their Fur Babies

Image via NYDailyNews

Among President Nixon’s dogs, Checkers probably is the most popular. Checkers was Nixon’s dog when he was still a Vice President and became quite popular when he got involved in Nixon’s speech while he was still campaigning for vice presidency. Because of Checkers, the National Dogs in Politics Day is celebrated yearly every 23rd of September.

Checkers never really had the chance to stay in the White House since he died four years before Nixon got elected as president. Other presidential dogs Nixon had were: Vicky the Poodle, Pasha the Terrier, and King Timahoe the Irish Setter.


4. President Gerald Ford

President Gerald Ford | Presidential Dogs: Past U.S. Presidents and Their Fur Babies

Image via Global Grind

President Ford and his family were quite partial to Golden Retrievers. Before moving into the White House, one of the family’s retrievers died. Susan, President Ford’s daughter, sought help from David Hume Kennerly, a family friend, in finding a new dog. Kennerly came to find Liberty, a Golden Retriever whose former name was Streaker.

After some time, Liberty had nine puppies as she was bred to a champion Golden Retriever. The Fords only kept one pup and named her Misty. Four of the puppies were sent to family friends as gifts, the three were purchased by other friends at $300 each and one pup named Jerry was given to the Leader Dogs for the Blind.

5. President Jimmy Carter

President Jimmy Carter | Presidential Dogs: Past U.S. Presidents and Their Fur Babies

Image via NYDailyNews

When the Carters moved into the White House, they did not have any dogs to bring. Verona Meeder, the public school teacher of President Carter’s daughter, gifted them a Border Collie mix and the Carters named him Grits.

Additionally, the Carters also had an Afghan Hound named Lewis Brown. There’s nothing much known about Lewis Brown aside from the fact he’s one of the presidential dogs who’s been lucky enough to live in the White House.


6. President Ronald Reagan

The Reagans were known to be animal lovers who spent quite some time at their ranch in California together with their horses and dogs. However, when they get to move into the White House, they did not bring any dogs with them. The Reagans remained dog-less until Lucky the Bouvier des Flandres was given to them.

Other presidential dogs of the Reagans were: Rex the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Victory the Golden Retriever, Peggy the Irish Setter, Taca the Siberian Husky, and Fuzzy the Belgian Sheepdog. Taca, Peggy, and Fuzzy did not spend much time though in the White House but rather stayed at the ranch of the Reagan family in Rancho del Cielo.


7. President George H.W. Bush

Millie the English Springer Spaniel, one of the most famous presidential dogs, was also the very first presidential pet to have written a book entitled “Millie’s Book: As Dictated to Barbara Bush.” The book was one of the bestsellers in 1992. 

Aside from being a bestseller “author,” Millie was also known to be the mother of two other presidential dogs — Ranger and Spot. Ranger was said to be the favorite of Bush Sr. while Spot was given to Bush Jr.


8. President Bill Clinton

President Bill Clinton grew up having dogs around him but during his first term, the Clintons did not have a dog with them. December of 1997, President Clinton finally got himself a chocolate Labrador Retriever and he named his furry friend, Buddy.

The Clintons also had a pet cat named Socks. Buddy and Socks did not get along pretty well but Buddy still remained a very loyal friend to President Bill Clinton — accompanying him in the Oval Office or walking with him around the White House.


9. President George W. Bush

President George W. Bush | Presidential Dogs: Past U.S. Presidents and Their Fur Babies

Image via

When President George Bush and First Lady Laura Bush moved into the White House, they brought with them Miss Beazley and Barney — both Scottish Terriers. Along with these two Scotties, the Bush family also had Spot, the offspring of Millie (Bush Sr’s presidential dog) and a cat named India.


10. President Barack Obama

President Barack Obama | Presidential Dogs: Past U.S. Presidents and Their Fur Babies

Image via The White House

The Obamas have two presidential dogs named Bo and Sunny. Both of them are Portuguese Water Dogs. Bo was a gift to President Obama’s daughters by Senator Ted Kennedy while Sunny’s origin is unknown as the Obamas haven’t confirmed where they got her. At the moment, Bo and Sunny are the only living presidential dogs.


Get to know more about the presidential dogs by watching POPSUGAR Entertainment‘s video:

It’s not easy being the president of the country but surely, these presidential dogs made the lives of our past commanders-in-chief a little less tough. Will President-elect Donald Trump finally decide to get a presidential dog? We just have to wait and see!


Which among the presidential dogs is your favorite? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Want to know the most popular dog breeds in the U.S.? Click here.


Feature image via Beauty of Nature



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